Dementia Help for “After Diagnosis”

The Dementia Spotlight Foundation, founded in January of 2016, is a local organization working to educate the community about dementia. “We hope to help make Decatur the first Dementia Inclusive city in the State of Georgia,” according to the organization. “To do this, we are committed to working with local media to raise awareness about Dementia/Alzheimer’s and how to embrace People Living with Dementia/Alzheimer’s in our community.” Dementia Spotlight Foundation envisions a world that does not fear dementia. Their message is to see communities capable of embracing dementia as a disability and supporting the needs experienced by individuals and families living with a changing brain. A basic question asked by countless families after a dementia diagnosis is “What now?” It’s this very question, these two simple words that spurred the launch of a foundation dedicated to providing resources, direction and actionable answers. Simply, they are here to help with “what now?”

With a focus on LIFE before loss, RIGHTS before research, and CARE before cure, they are dedicated to changing perspective and improving life experiences of individuals, families, and communities affected by the increasing and always changing condition of dementia. They believe in the unlimited possibility of maintaining rewarding and meaningful life for those directly affected by dementia. Dementia Spotlight sponsors and provides funding for the United States Dementia Action Alliance. Inclusive of People Living with Dementia, this volunteer coalition is engaged in changing our nation’s understanding and attitudes about dementia. Knowing that people living with dementia (PLWD) have a wealth of knowledge, experience, strength and hope to share, Dementia Spotlight sponsored ten PLWD and their care partners to attend Dementia Action Alliance’s first North American Dementia Conference in June, 2017.

Research holds hope for all, but the fears and stigmas of dementia, as currently perceived, disempower and isolate families and individuals diagnosed. Dementia is a disability and individuals have a right to community accommodations that allow them to continue to live engaged and meaningful lives. Dementia is a complex condition requiring courage and a shift in thinking, understanding and planning. It demands new interpersonal skills and a willingness to learn more. In the short time that Dementia Spotlight Foundation has been in existence, they have identified and collaborated with many individuals and organizations that provide outstanding training to improve care partnerships with People Living with Dementia, including:  Leading Age Georgia, The Eden Alternative, The Alzheimer’s Music Fest and Teepa Snow. To learn more about the organization, visit http://www.dementiaspotlightfoundation.org/.

The foundation will be hosting a special event on May 14that Eddie’s Attic from 11:00 a.m. to 3:00 p.m., at 515-B North McDonough Street, Decatur, GA 30030. Admission is free and lunch will be provided by Eddie’s Attic. Music will be provided by Zangaro and Lianne Hutcheson of Chattahoochee Golden Child. Donations and sponsors for Alzheimer’s Music Fest 2018 are welcome. To RSVP please email Vincezangaro@gmail.com. If you are interested in information for advertising on Decaturish, go to advertise@decaturish.com.